maekchu (2832) - Hirakata, JAPAN - SEP 21, 2015
2.3 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 7/20
UPDATED: SEP 22, 2015 Bottle from local Yamaya store (as "Aqula Namahage Bock"). Nose of plums dark sugar, very light chocolate, and some oxidation. Dark brown color, translucent, with a thin film of residue-like junk. Thin dark fruit flavor, with a vague sweetness, and it flattens out in finish. Thin body (for a bock), with almost zero carbonation. Dull, characterless stuff. Poorly made. I’m guessing that they bottled a bad batch and sent it out to the stores. All three bottled Aqula brews I tried recently were subpar, and I suppose I need to reevaluate when I find them on tap.
biirusaikou (1446) - - APR 25, 2015
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 13/20
Dark chocolate, raisin. milky chocolate, dry fruit, cereals, touch of spice, clean finish. Quite free-style but pleasant, kind of rum raisin vibe to it with a cocoa edge.
Westkyoto77 (565) - Kyoto, JAPAN - FEB 1, 2014
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 13/20
Bottle. Dark brown-black. Caramelly nose with plums. Medium body. Slightly sticky, with some toffee and dark grapes. Touch of smoke. Really nice.
KansaiBeerLvrs (3433) - Kyoto, JAPAN - MAR 10, 2013
3.6 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
The Namahage bock on tap at Tadg’s Aqula event. The nicest beer from Aqula I tried at this event. It poured a nice dark reddish-black with a slight head & decent lacing. The flavor was lots of malty goodness but the body was slightly on the thin side. Overall, a really nice bock.
shoulderbroken (2951) - Tokyo, JAPAN - OCT 7, 2012
3.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bottle at home from the brewery webshop. Rich brown small golden thin head. Aroma is black treacle, bit of smoke and spice, roasty malt, some beefiness, bit of soy sauce, maybe some sweetness. Taste is similar. Quite full on, lots more black treacle taste, bit of caramel, some savoury bitterness, slightly meaty. Further down sweetness gets stronger. Lots of caramel. Sweet thick lingering finish. Nice but feels boozier than it is.
motelpogo (7669) - Plzen, CZECH REPUBLIC - FEB 3, 2012
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
bottled. purple with no head, looked like cola; a whiff of dessicated coconut with some dark chocolate; rum’n’raisin flavours, lightly metallic, a little fizzy but pleasantly so; finishes with vanilla sweetness. a decent effort with the quality of the ingredients showing
KyotoLefty (7975) - Kyoto, JAPAN - MAR 31, 2009
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
Bottle from Yamaoka.
Almost black with a tinge of red. Low tan head. Rich caramel and Munich malts, with dark fruits in the nose; quite sweet. Nice dark malt flavor, with a bit of tangy fruit. Sweet, with noticeable alcohol. Bitter, rather hoppy finish. Rather light in body, with low carbonation. A true bock—nicely made with good, rich malt.
buzzoven (376) - JAPAN - OCT 28, 2008
3 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
This was pretty nice...muted smell of cherry oak and chocolate, deep ruby brown with very little purplish head. Flavour was woodsy, raisiny, winey, sweet with a cotton candy twist, and slightly tart with a slight toasted puckerish finish.
unclemattie (4358) - Georgia, USA - MAY 1, 2008
2 AROMA 2/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 2/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 10/20
Short 12OZ bottle. pours a nice hazy copper color . Belgian hop aroma. flavor is slightly tart. Great beer if it is a sour.
MartinT (8661) - Montreal, Quebec, CANADA - AUG 2, 2007
3.4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
My Bottom Line:
Fruity vinosity and malt candy spin within this lean Dunkler Bock, showing their chocolatey and spicy undertones once in a while. Not shaped into the most stellar of mouthfeels, it still manages to entertain throughout the glass.
Further Personal Perceptions:
-A ring of foam circumspects the rubyish dark brown.
-The soft carbonation showcases the slick maltiness.
-After having had a few Aqula beers, I guess I’m just not as big a fan of their products as most rating gaijins.
-Fruitiness is quite expressive, maybe a bit too much so for my tastes in the style.
Bottle; thx Tim!